Drexel hosts gallery of future products

Christian Rattell exits the igloo-like decompression chamber. Paige Ozaroski/Metro
Christian Rattell exits the igloo-like decompression chamber. Paige Ozaroski/Metro

Smartphones. Tablets. Laptops. Text messages. Emails. HD. LCD. Plasma.

Deep breath.

“People are feeling overloaded,” said Nicole Koltick, director of Drexel University’s Design Futures Lab. “They’re feeling overwhelmed. They’re starting to notice that they have to check their phone every five minutes.”

Face it, we’re constantly plugged into one iDevice or another. And Drexel design students are conceptualizing future consumer products that address life concerns without a screen.

Some of the concepts are on display through July 21st at Drexel’s URBN Center Annex on Filbert Street in West Philadelphia.

Koltick explained that more wearable technology, such as jackets and scarves outfitted with sensors that can nudge us in the right direction instead of staring at a GPS app, may provide a blueprint for the future.

“Instead of just looking at a screen, I think we’re going to want queues that are much more integrated, much more subtle,” she said.

Some concepts include an igloo-like structure intended for home use as a quiet, unplugged respite from the onslaught of information and technology. Koltick noted that her students are “Looking at other human values and to really try and bring some of that back.”


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